Entertainment of Tuesday, 8 December 2015
Ghanaian International Reggae star Rocky Dawuni who will go down in history as the first Ghanaian to ever get a Grammy nomination, said a musician does not need to live in America to get Grammy recognition.
Speaking on Neat FM’s “Entertainment Ghana” this morning from his current base in America, excited Rocky first expressed how he felt when he first heard that he has been nominated for the Grammys.
“Yesterday, when the Grammy nominations were released, it was a very honoring time for Ghana music history and had several congratulatory messages from a lot of people. It is definitely a great honor to be able to take Ghana music to different parts of the world and I now I have that recognition so I want to thank Ghanaians and my fans all over the world for all the support they have given me so far”.
Rocky said he disagrees with people with the accession that a musician must live outside Ghana before they can get a Grammy nomination.
“You can get the Grammy Awards anywhere you are, you can be nominated as long as you have the record released in different parts of the world and especially released in America. If it is legally released in America, then you can be able to qualify for the Grammy consideration. It has nothing to do with living in America”.
Rocky added that Angelique Kidjo, Ladysmith, Black Mambazo do not live in America but they have all been recognized by Grammy and they have even gone further to win Grammys. “It depends on the creativity you put in and if the work is great enough and it travels to the ears of the awards people, then you are more likely to get a consideration”.
According to Rocky before your album is even considered for Grammy nomination, your album has to do so well and it has to attain some level of recognition before the Grammy would even consider your album for selection. He said he got the nomination with hard work.
“We have really put a lot of efforts in this album. When the record came out, it was in the billboard chat and we traveled and played all over the world including Canada, Iceland, Greenland, Denmark, Austria, Germany, England and other parts of Europe doing concerts and all those things built the attention this album is getting now. So it’s a lot of hard work”.
Asked why it appears that musicians who do indigenous Ghanaian music like Highlife are not getting such recognition, Rocky said his Branches of the same tree album is combination of several genres of music including Highlife. “If you listen to my new album, it’s a fusion of Reggae, Afro beats, Highlife, and a lot of different styles from around the world”.
He said he has every Ghanaian style of music on his album “I had to really evolve the style and put elements of my own Ghanaian influences into this album for it to get notoriety it is getting. So it means that every Ghanaian style of music is represented in there. Because I am a Reggae artiste doesn’t mean that my style is a straight out Reggae”.
Rocky said the only way to make it out there from our part of the world is to be original and innovative. “The only way your music can get this kind of attention from our part of the world, it that you have to do your own style and you have to do it on a global level and with the highest of quality”.
The historic first Ghanaian Grammy nominee said everything he does is for Ghana. “I do it for Ghana because we all started in Ghana and I want to say that any Ghanaian musician wherever you are, if you put your heart into whatever you do, you dream big and you work hard, you can make that happen”.
Asked what his personal secret is, Rocky Dawuni disclosed that his secret for going as far as getting a Grammy nomination is humility.
“The main secret is that you have to be humble. When I started every opportunity I get I work very hard at it and at the same time humility help open doors and it makes people want to work with you. Music is an ego business so sometime you meet musicians who have one or two hits and they think that is all but if you are humble, people can work with you and I believe that people will push you with all their hearts”.
Rocky said the only thing he needs from Ghanaians now is their support and prayers.